A 14-year-old Hamilton student was fatally stabbed, while his mother was with him, outside Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School on Monday, police said. The teen was attacked just before 1:30 p.m. and died shortly after in hospital. Police have three suspects in custody and are searching for two more. One of those in custody is also 14, another is 18.
"When I look at this … it's a complete disregard for human life, which is extremely concerning for people of such a young age," said Det.-Sgt. Steve Bereziuk, in a news conference Monday evening.
Police say the stabbing was captured on video which police are reviewing. The outstanding suspects appear to be in their early teens and one of them is a female.
Police responded around 1:23 p.m. to what was originally described as a "serious assault," and put Winston Churchill and four other area schools under lockdown. Just over two hours later, Hamilton police announced that the student had died.
Alice Smith, who has lived just down the road from the school for the past 14 years, said she was sitting in her front sunroom with her husband on Monday afternoon when five teens came around the corner, with a car following close behind. Smith said it appeared to her the woman in the car was trying to help the boy. "She said she tried to save him, but she just couldn't do it," Smith said. "She was very upset. She couldn't stop crying." Asked whether the victim had been bullied, Bereziuk declined to go into detail, saying only that he was aware of a "relationship" between the teen and those who allegedly attacked him.
The detective also said he believes some of the suspects were students at the school. Police are still working to determine what role each suspect may have played.
The Major Crimes Unit has taken over the investigation. Investigators have not recovered a weapon and are asking residents near the school to carefully search their properties for a knife.
Anyone with cellphone video of the attack is also asked to contact them.